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Preview: Group B qualifiers face-off in dead rubber
Asia Cup 2018

Preview: Group B qualifiers face-off in dead rubber

With Sri Lanka knocked out of the tournament already, Bangladesh and Afghanistan will play an inconsequential match on Thursday in the last match of group stage.

Irrespective of the result, Bangladesh will India in the first Super Four match on Friday, while Afghanistan will play Pakistan next day.

Both teams could rest players, Bangladesh will need to keep in view the traveling they will need to do to Dubai after the match to face India next day.

They have some injury issues, so resting Shakib Al Hasan (finger) and Mushfiqur Rahim (rib) would make sense. It would also make sense for their captain Mashrafe Mortaza to rest on Thursday, instead of taking on the strain of back-to-back games for what is essentially a dead rubber. The likes of Abu Hider, Nazmul Islam and Ariful Haque will look to gain more exposure ahead of bigger challenges.

Afghanistan will focus on a familiar template. Rahmat Shah's 72 off 90 balls against Sri Lanka in the previous match backed up a solid start from the openers but the key will be the three spinners - Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Nabi.

Players to watch out for

Mohammad Mithun (Bangladesh)

Mohammad Mithun made a confident fifty against Sri Lanka and helped Mushfiqur push the total beyond 250. Bangladesh will be hoping Mithun to stabalise the middle in case they decide to rest Mushfiqur or Shakib.

Rahmat Shah (Afghanistan)

Rahmat Shah (72) was the top-scorer for Afghanistan against Sri Lanka and has been one of Afghanistan’s most consistent batsman over the past few years. Having played Dhaka Premier League as well, Shah can make use of the experience in the game.

Squads

Afghanistan (probable):

Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Ihsanullah, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan (capt), Hashmatullah Shahidi, Mohammad Nabi, Najibullah Zadran, Gulbadin Naib, Rashid Khan, Aftab Alam, Mujeeb Ur Rahman

Bangladesh (probable):

Liton Das, Nazmul Hossain Shanto, Shakib Al Hasan, Mohammad Mithun, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mashrafe Mortaza (capt), Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Rubel Hossain, Mustafizur Rahman